E-learning is gaining popularity and momentum at an encouraging pace, irrespective of the audience profiles and across industries. Though some industries are clearly early adopters like Banking and Education sector, it is evident that all organizations stand to benefit a lot from technology-aided learning. This includes nonprofit organizations of the development sector, who have to grapple with continual training needs, varied audiences, time crunches as well as budgetary constraints.
Technology has seeped in to the development sector as well and it is helping most far-flung organizations in the sector connect and collaborate more with their peers. Though training budgets are limited, Technology-aided learning solutions can be designed as per the needs of the development sector to reap a number of evident, short term benefits as well as some not-so-evident, long term benefits.
E-learning helps employees connect and collaborate: Most non-profit organizations have employees within different offices, with field offices being mostly far-flung and remote. With a technology-aided platform, all employees can be engaged with one another on a continuous basis which helps them work better together. The e-learning platform can automatically send updates on events, trainings, news, with no added efforts from that relieves employees of administrative duties that come along with arranging events and making sure all employees fit them into their schedules. Most modern eLearning platforms are equipped with features like content sharing, reporting, calendaring, and administrative tools help employees stay up-to-date and in sync with one another.
E-Learning helps manage organizational knowledge: Most organizations have a worth of knowledge but no clear way of de-cluttering or arranging the relevant learning material. While most of these training material is in the form of hard copies or even PPTs, an LMS can help organizing the material and disseminating it to the relevant stakeholders. Using quick and efficient ways of e-learning creation with rapid-authoring tools, all existing material can be converted into e-format. These can then be catalogues within the LMS, with appropriate tags, which helps employees search for them on the portal. The LMS can be programmed into recommending suitable learning content as per the learner’s role within the organization. So if the manager fills in the role description, the system would automatically churn out all courses that would benefit the specific employee. This helps the employees within the sector gain knowledge on a continuous basis and as per their evolving roles within the organization.
E-Learning successfully breaks down barriers: Most nonprofits organizations have members and employees that are geographically as well as linguistically separated but share the same organizational goal. An LMS that can be deployed in multiple languages that can break the barriers of location or language, and unites all employees regardless of where they live or what languages they understand. This feeling of ‘oneness’ is crucial when working in the development sector where the nature of work is such that understanding each other is at the core of organizational success.
E-Learning does not always bring IT hassles: Most modern learning management systems do not require in-house IT teams for maintenance. The LMS vendor can provide the support needed for the first few months or as long as it is needed by the organization. This is especially useful for non-profit organizations that do not have IT personnel on staff or do not have the budget to hire IT personnel. Thus, the technology-aided platform can be implemented and run without internal IT support. The support extended from the LMS provider can be worked within available budgets, to make e-learning a cost-effective solution.
E-Learning encourages sharing: As many organizations in the development sector are scattered all over the globe but work towards one cause, they stand to benefit a lot from learning about and from each other. But it is not always possible to write and share detailed reports or findings. So a lot of learning which is actually present within the organization does not circulate throughout but stays within small circles. With e-learning, employees can be encouraged to share instantly through audio or video clips, online blogs, and discussion boards within the LMS or even video blogs. Field videos, findings, views on world events or even small personal achievements can be shared – to create a channel of sharing and learning. With appropriate tags and descriptions, the shared items can be archived on the LMS and can be searched as per need by employees – across offices and locations.
The success of e-learning in the development sector comes the easy assurance that most employees within the sector have an open mind about learning. With technology, learning becomes more available and accessible. The learning content becomes more relevant and updated as well. That’s a true win-win for all.